[Photo: Adrian Nicole LeBlanc with her father, Adrian Leon LeBlanc]

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The Ground We Lived On
Premiered November 13, 2006, on All Things Considered.


The Ground We Lived On documents the loving relationship between journalist Adrian Nicole LeBlanc and her father, Adrian Leon LeBlanc, in the last months of his life. Using recordings she made of her father, namesake and inspiration from his hospital bed in the family living room, The Ground We Lived On is an ode to the ordinary ways we continue loving even as we are letting go.

In January 2003, Adrian Leon LeBlanc was 85 years old and the father of four. He was in the final stages of lung cancer and had just entered hospice care. He spent his days in his house in Leominster, Massachusetts, a working-class town near Boston, in the company of his family. During this time, Adrian Nicole LeBlanc regularly drove in from her home in New York City to visit her father.

Each time she visited, Adrian Nicole taped her conversations with her father. She wanted to preserve a record of their relationship and capture her father's voice. Adrian Leon LeBlanc had been a labor activist and World War II veteran; as such, he had always been outspoken on behalf of others' interests but was reluctant to talk about himself and his personal feelings. Still, he welcomed his daughter's recorder, believing that documenting the last months of his life might help other families who were going through similar experiences.

The Ground We Lived On is a story of loving and losing a parent and the record of a father's final gift to his daughter: helping her to conceive of a world without him.

Writer and Narrator: Adrian Nicole LeBlanc / Producer: Sarah Kramer / Executive Producer: Dave Isay / Executive Producer for All Things Considered: Christopher Turpin / Special Thanks to The LeBlanc family, Arthur Joseph Giangrande, Michael Garofalo for tremendous assistance, Katie Simon, Piya Kochhar, Donna Galeno, Heather Burke, Grant Fuller, Lizzie Jacobs, Lizzy Cooper Davis, Jonah Engle, Edith Presler, Karen DiMattia, Dalton Rooney, Kathrina Proscia, Jen Goya, Eliza Bettinger, Brett Myers, and the StoryCorps Senior Team: Kayvon Bahramian, Nora Levine, Matt Ozug, Tracy Serdjenian, Nick Yulman who all contributed in multiple and meaningful ways to the project and the process / Major Funding for this radio documentary was provided by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, with additional support from the National Endowment for the Arts.

 

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This piece is available in the following audio formats [11:31 min]:
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intro
transcript

MORE

Bios

A Note on the Story

Adrian Leon LeBlanc's Obituary

Adrian Leon LeBlanc's Army Discharge Papers

Photos of the LeBlanc Family

Audio Extras

Resources

An article by Adrian Nicole LeBlanc

Q&A with Adrian Nicole LeBlanc: A Journalist Grapples with Grief

Q&A with 'The Ground We Lived On' Producer Sarah Kramer



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